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The Yale cocktail- what else would you drink while reading about culture wars?




The Yale cocktail seems only fitting as the accompaniment to a post about Paul Rudolph, former dean of the Yale School of Architecture, and architect of Crawford House, a casualty of the modernism/post modernism culture wars. Did you miss this post? Check it out here.

There are many takes on the Yale cocktail. The general consensus seems to be that the original started out as a mix of gin, bitters, and Seltzer and eventually evolved into a more colorful version with the addition of Crème Yvette in the 1890’s. When Crème Yvette went off the market in the 1960’s, the recipe changed to include maraschino liqueur and then blue curacao. (The horror) Now Crème Yvette is available again, so some versions have returned to the 1890’s recipe without Crème Yvette, and others contain both Crème Yvette and maraschino. I have not been able to find any Crème Yvette on the shelves here in Boston, (I suspect something is going on with production again) so I’ve substituted Crème de Violette for Crème Yvette. Crème Yvette is a mix of Parma Violet, and berry flavors, whereas Crème de Violette is just violet flavors. I used Rothman and Winter Crème de Violette, which features alpine Queen Charlotte and March violets. (Don’t ask me what the difference is between Parma and Queen Charlotte violets.)This version of the Yale cocktail has a subtle, delicate sweetness and a much bluer tint than the Crème Yvette version, which has a more crimson hue. Given the Harvard Yale rivalry, I think this bluer version of the Yale is more fitting. Ingredients:

2 oz. dry gin 3/4 oz. Creme Yvette or Creme de Violette 1/4 oz. maraschino liqueur 1/4 oz. dry vermouth lemon twist Place all ingredients (except the lemon twist) in a mixing glass half-filled with ice. Stir briskly until well chilled. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist. This cocktail is slightly on the sweet side. If you prefer a more booze forward version, try skipping the maraschino or bumping up the gin.



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